Wedding venues, catering halls and restaurants seeing pandemic restriction changes this week

Dancing at weddings will be different. Each table will be assigned their own dancing pod, marked by a square on the floor. And the pods are all 6 feet apart from one another, making sure different groups don't mingle.

News 12 Staff

Mar 15, 2021, 9:52 PM

Updated 1,221 days ago

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Catering halls are seeing pandemic restrictions relaxed this week, while other businesses will see welcomed changes in coming days and weeks as well
Farmingdale event planner Mario Simone says it's been a nightmare since his business, Hart to Hart Entertainment, was stopped in its tracks by the pandemic.
"The bills are stacked, credit cards are maxed. We want to get back to work," says Simone.
His wish is being answered, as indoor wedding venues and catering halls can increase capacity to 50% with a maximum of 150 people starting Monday. And for the first time, dancing will be allowed.
But dancing at weddings will also be different. Each table will be assigned their own dancing pod, marked by a square on the floor. And the pods are all 6 feet apart from one another, making sure different groups don't mingle.
Masks and physical distancing are required, and everyone needs to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test.
Michael Lessing operates 16 wedding venues across Long Island, and says he had to lay off most of his employees at the height of the pandemic. Now, many of them will be rehired.
"This is a really great start to what was a really hard year," he says. "We're really excited to be getting back to a semblance of real weddings."
Meanwhile, restaurants will get to go from 50% to 75% capacity on Friday. And starting next month, indoor performance venues will reopen, with a maximum of 100 people.
But with new, more contagious variants spreading, some doctors wonder if the state might be reopening too quickly.
"We want to get through this. We don't want to spike the ball on the five yard line," says Dr. Leonard Krilov, of NYU Langone Hospital Long Island.


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